Living Things

Spring / Summer 2012

What strategies are contemporary artists using to “animate the inanimate?” To better understand the complexities of our rapport with things, this issue casts a critical eye on contemporary artistic practices that challenge our common perceptions of the “object” and that invite us to reconsider its nature, status, and various functions. This number takes stock of a current phenomenon that resists the dematerialization of art heralded by new media, a phenomenon that manifests itself in a “return to the object” and in the avid interest of the social sciences in material culture.







Current Issue


Spring Summer 2024

Because it is essential for it to be open to the world, art is particularly affected by concerns related to planetary travel. From a position at the intersection of contemporary art, leisure, ecology, and destination culture, Esse no. 111 observes artists’ and critical thinkers’ strategies for revisiting the very notion of tourism. Although the harmful impacts of the tourism industry are beyond question, the thematic section avoids falling prey to tourismphobia and simply pointing out its failures. Rather, this issue offers a guided tour of situations and places where art and tourism converge.